Re: [dev] rebooting the web (it was: surf rewrite for WebKit2GTK)

From: Dmitrij D. Czarkoff <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 2014 23:13:25 +0100

Anthony J. Bentley said:
> Does grep abort upon encountering invalid UTF-8 sequences in a file? No.

Grep's syntax is not in file input, it is in search strings. So yes,
grep always aborts encountering invalid syntax.

> Does troff abort rendering on invalid macro usage? Practically never.

Troff has too much of dialects and incompatibilites, and no standards to
help. For HTML closer alternative is TeX, which requires user input in
case of invalid macro usage and drops subtree if user refuses to deal
with breakage.

Also note: unlike HTML both Troff and TeX are supposed to be extensible,
which makes some degree of error handling sane. HTML has no macros, no
ability to include external packages or other ways to extend its syntax
(well, JavaScript is a way to extend HTML, but we are talking about HTML
parser, aren't we), so the only effect of relaxed parser is an
accumulation of historical garbage that is carried from version to
version. Just look at your user agent string to see what I mean.

P.S.: HTML would become a better language if the standard (1)
deprecated "<head>" and "<body>" tags, which are useless anyway, (2)
required strict rules for tags, and (3) required UTF-8.

P.P.S.: Same applies to CSS. Several tricks could make it suck times
less. JavaScript can't be fixed though.

Dmitrij D. Czarkoff
Received on Fri Oct 31 2014 - 23:13:25 CET

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